Denis MacShane's Career As Labour MP 'Over' After Expenses Abuses

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Former minister Denis MacShane's career as a Labour MP is "effectively over" after it was recommended he be suspended from the Commons for 12 months over a string of illegitimate expenses claims running to thousands.

The Committee on Standards and Privileges said today that it was recommending the punishment after finding MacShane submitted 19 false invoices "plainly intended to deceive" Parliament's expenses authority.

The MP, who was suspended from the Labour Party this morning, said he was "shocked and saddened" that his political career had been destroyed and was now considering his position.

Labour declared Mr MacShane's career as a Labour MP to be "effectively over".

A party spokesman said: "These are very serious findings concerning Denis MacShane and we accept his statement this morning that his career as a Labour MP is effectively over.

"In the light of the report's recommendations to the House, the Labour Party has suspended Denis MacShane with immediate effect, pending a full NEC (National Executive Committee) inquiry.

"We will be talking to Denis MacShane about his future and the best course of action for him and for his constituency."

The Standards and Privileges Committee said it was impossible to say how much Mr MacShane claimed "outside the rules", but it "may have been in the order of £7,500".

Chairman Kevin Barron said it was "the gravest case" his committee had considered in its role as Parliament's sleaze watchdog.

The committee said Mr MacShane failed to co-operate with an investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

In a statement, MacShane said: "I am shocked and saddened that the BNP has won its three-year campaign to destroy my political career as a Labour MP despite a full police investigation which decided not to proceed after investigations and interviews.

"I am glad the committee notes that there is no question of personal gain.

"Clearly I deeply regret that the way I chose to be reimbursed for costs related to my work in Europe and in combating anti-semitism, including being the Prime Minister's personal envoy, has been judged so harshly.

"I remain committed to work for progressive values, for Britain playing a full part in Europe, and for combating anti-semitism even though I can no longer undertake this work as a Labour MP.

"I am consulting family and friends as I consider my position and study the full implications of the report. I am obviously desperately sorry for any embarrassment I have caused my beloved Labour Party and its leader Ed Miliband whom I greatly admire."

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